Cacio e Pepe

Lidia Bastianich (With minor changes)

The predecessor of mac and cheese as we know it now, this Roman
dish is made with pasta, cheese and pepper. The secret is using
the starchy pasta's cooking water to create a creamy sauce that
coats each strand. The result is perhaps the ultimate 3-ingredient
pasta ever.


10 quarts water
3 ounces linguine pasta, dried (85g)
2 teaspoons freshly ground coarse black pepper (10g or 30 turns
from a pepper mill)
Olive oil
2 peeled and cracked garlic cloves to perfume the oil
4 tablespoons Pecorino cheese, finely grated (60g)
(Used 1/2 cup mix of  both Pecorino and Parmesan freshly  grated.)
1 tablespoon butter


Bring 10 quarts of water to a boil and season liberally with salt.
Cook the pasta for 7 minutes.

While the pasta is cooking, toast the black pepper in oil in a
large sauté pan until fragrant. (with the two cracked garlic

Ladle 4 ounces (two small ladles full) of pasta water to stop the
(Add tablespoon of butter)

Keep the heat off until the pasta is done.

Once the pasta is cooked, drain and add to the sauté pan.

Turn the heat on medium high and slowly sprinkle in the Pecorino.

Toss the pasta while you add the cheese to emulsify. Once all the
cheese is added, adjust your sauce with some more pasta water so
it's not too thick. Serve immediately, top with some freshly
grated cheese and a few cracks of pepper.Cacio e Pepe